The purpose of the activity was to audit Petro-Canada Norge AS' (Petro-Canada's) preparations for drilling exploration well 34/4-11 in production licence 375.
The PSA carried out the audit in meetings with the company and supplier representatives in PCN’s offices on 23 September 2009. In this meeting, the company presented its activities in connection with the preparations for drilling the 34/4-11 well with the mobile facility Songa Delta.
Songa Delta (Source: Songa Offshore)
Petro-Canada has now merged with the Canadian company Suncor Energy. The company will be drilling its first well in the fall of 2009, and plans to drill its next well in 2010.
This audit activity is a follow-up of previous activities aimed at the company Petro-Canada and its preparations for its first well on the Norwegian continental shelf.
The objective of the activity was to verify that Petro-Canada has carried out the necessary preparations to safeguard health, safety and the environment in its preparations for drilling well 34/4-11.
In this audit, the PSA assigned priority to evaluating whether Petro-Canada's management system is satisfactory in connection with its application for consent to carry out this activity. The competence of the company's staff and the capacity of the company and the suppliers are among the most important factors as regards managing risk and preparedness elements. We identified factors relating to the following items:
It was also noted that transfer of experience and continuity were in accordance with the established practice between the companies in relation to use of the mobile drilling facility Songa Delta.
It was stated that the cooperation functioned as expected and that there was a particularly close cooperation with the other licensees in the production licence because the well was considered to be demanding. In this connection, modifications were carried out on the BOP systems on the facility in advance of the activities.
At the same time, some challenges in relation to maintenance of the facility were pointed out, in an HSE context. This audit activity also emphasised the challenges that follow from specific well data. The pore pressure forecast for the reservoir section in this well is very close to high pressure and high temperature conditions, with the challenges this entails for the operator and the supplier companies.
The PSA did not note any nonconformities in relation to regulatory requirements in this audit.
However, several items with room for improvement were identified. These include organisation and competence, emergency preparedness, risk assessment, high pressure and high temperature conditions, operator cooperation, helicopter services and maintenance.